The kudyapi is a plucked long necked lute and has two strings. It is a
member of the “boat lute” sub-section of the plucked cordophone family.
It is found in the island of Mindanao and played by the Maranao,
Maguindinao, T'boli, Monobo and other Indigenous lumad groups. The
kudyapi is known by its many alternate names including “Hegelung,
Kutyapi, Fegling or Faglung”. Compositions arranged for the kudyapi are
played in the binalig or dinaladay scales. Another difference between
the Maguindinao and Marinao peoples they have a specific set of rhythms
who are associated with melodies that are played on the kudyapi. The
Kudyapi is also played in accompaniment to the epic chants of bayoka.
The Marinao people play the kudyapi to accompany the Singkil dance.
However this is largely replaced by the more common Kulingtan
ensembles. The kasayao-sa-singkil / kasingkil ensembles often pair the
kudyapi with the giwong (jaw hap) and soling (flute). The kudyapi is
also used in the serenade ensembles or kapanirong. The roles of the
vocalist and kudyapi player are two different people in the lumad
Anatomy of the Kudyapi:
The components for the
include include a hand carved body, made from two separate pieces of
wood.The species of wood used in the construction of the kudyapi is
Artocarpus heterophyllus or jack fruit wood.
The back is attached onto the kudyapi by staples or nails. 11
raised triangular frets are adhered to the surface of the neck. The
frets are positioned underneath the first bottom string. Where as the
second string on the top serves as a drone. There are two wooden tuning
pegs or more commonly two machine gear tuners attached to each side of
the head stock. A rope made from hemp is attached from the back to the
tuning gears thus allowing the musician to stand when playing the
Lumad is a Cebuano term who is used to describe the Non-Christianized
or Non-Islamic groups of Southern Philippines.
Bradeis Traditional Music of the Philippines
Musical instruments of the Philippines
(web site) > South East
Asia ~ The Garland Enclyclopedia of Music, Page 905.